This novel and innovative Joint Degree Program (JDP) between Shizuoka University and Hamamatsu University School of Medicine, Cooperative Major in Medical Photonics, was established in April 2018. It offers a Doctoral Degree in Medical Photonics created through integration of leading edge research in opto-electronics with photo-medicine and fosters human resource development in this new and emerging field.

The JDP in Medical Photonics is an accredited graduate program incorporating specialized educational content and training from two universities that have combined their efforts for joint delivery of educational courses. Students enrolled in this small-scale program benefit from individualized instruction and high level research guidance by engineering experts from Shizuoka University and medical science experts from Hamamatsu University School of Medicine. Specialization offered by the program is multifaceted – it includes graduate research engaging both the fundamental and the applied aspects of the domain with extensive coverage from medical and engineering perspectives.

Shizuoka University is leading the educational research in the fields of advanced imaging technology, innovative photo emission and detection, opto-electronic engineering, and nanotechnology. The Research Institute of Electronics (RIE) at Shizuoka University, a key partner of the program, was founded in 1965 upon the heritage of Professor Kenjiro Takayanagi, the inventor of the electronic television at the Hamamatsu Higher Technical School that merged into Shizuoka University. Continuing the tradition, the RIE conducts leading-edge studies in opto-electronics and related fields that are of particular relevance to this JDP in Medical Photonics. The research being conducted at the RIE constitutes a solid foundation for delivery of highly-specialized knowledge and development of sophisticated skills through advanced studies and training in medical engineering and photonics.

The Hamamatsu University School of Medicine has always been proactive in advancing optical technology applications in medicine. To promote novel, innovative, and cutting edge research and development in the field, the university established the Preeminent Medical Photonics Education & Research Center (MPERC) in 2016. Through a synergy of academic, industry, and government efforts, the MPERC is cultivating new generations of experts posit to shape the future of opto-electronics, photonics, and imaging in medicine. Being hosted at Hamamatsu University School of Medicine, through the affiliated University Hospital, the MPERC also provides access to a well established medical environment for therapeutic training and health-related experimental work that complements the engineering components of the Joint Degree Program.

The JDP in Medical Photonics offers unique new opportunities to the students enrolled in the program. Students with a background in various engineering disciplines are provided access to research and studies in medicine in a fully fledged medical environment at the Preeminent Medical Photonics Education & Research Center and related facilities. Moreover, students with medical backgrounds are provided the opportunity to conduct research and advanced studies in engineering at the Research Institute of Electronics and related facilities. Furthermore, the JDP promotes interdisciplinary education as it brings together students from disciplines in engineering and medicine, allowing them to attend courses collectively, carry out collaborative research, and work on joint projects that stimulate cross-disciplinary exchanges, improve communication skills, and foster creativity and innovation.

The graduates of the JDP in Medical Photonics pledge to adhere to the highest standards of research and medical ethics. Based on the training and experience they gain both in engineering and in medical environments, they develop a much deeper understanding of the specificities of engineering in medicine. The JDP graduates are, therefore, well prepared to lead the research, design, and development of highly innovative medical equipment and related technologies.

We believe that our Joint Degree Program is forging a well educated, fully trained, and highly motivated task force capable of carrying out leading edge R&D in medical photonics and making breakthroughs that will shape the future of the medicine, healthcare, and aging in the 21st century.

It is a great privilege to welcome all of you – aspirants and new students – to our novel and innovative Joint Degree Program in Medical Photonics.

TANZAWA Teturo, Trustee(Educational Affairs and Affiliated Schools), Shizuoka University
YAMAMOTO Seiji, Executive Directors for Education & Collaboration Development, Hamamatsu University School of Medicine